A subcommittee of a Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry panel recommended Tuesday that the country’s minimum hourly wage for fiscal 2014, which ends in March 2015, be raised by ¥16 on average from the previous year.
The minimum wage will average ¥780 if the recommendation by the Central Minimum Wages Council subcommittee is implemented.
The margin of the recommended hike is the largest since the ¥17 in fiscal 2010. It is the third consecutive year that a double-figure hike has been proposed.
The hike comes in line with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s aim of increasing wages in order to pull Japan out of deflation.
With the subcommittee’s recommendation, the minimum wage is estimated to exceed welfare benefits in all 47 prefectures. Currently, welfare benefits top the minimum wage in five prefectures, including Tokyo, Hokkaido and Hiroshima.
The council submitted the recommendation to Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Norihisa Tamura the same day.
Each of the prefectures will decide its own minimum wage based on the recommendation. The new minimum wages will come into effect from October.
In fiscal 2013, which ended in March, the average minimum hourly wage stood at ¥764.